Basic Trucker's Toolkit - What Should I Bring On The Road?

Topic 2698 | Page 1

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Donna G.'s Comment
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I do not drive a truck yet. I am going to Squire Transports CDL training (School for Knight Transport) this March. The Things You Need on the Truck List from them said to have a basic tool kit and first aide kit. I do not want to waste money and would like to know what items a "Basic Truckers Took Kit" requires in a truckers experienced opinion. I think I can handle the first aide kit. However I never turn away good advice particularly if it can save me a nickel.

I would also like to know if you prefer one "Trucker's Stuff Store or Website" above any other because of reliable quality and good prices.

Sorry to be in need of so much information. Very blessed by all the help and once again Thank You Thank You Thank You.

Donna

CDL:

Commercial Driver's License (CDL)

A CDL is required to drive any of the following vehicles:

  • Any combination of vehicles with a gross combined weight rating (GCWR) of 26,001 or more pounds, providing the gross vehicle weight rating (GVWR) of the vehicle being towed is in excess of 10,000 pounds.
  • Any single vehicle with a GVWR of 26,001 or more pounds, or any such vehicle towing another not in excess of 10,000 pounds.
  • Any vehicle, regardless of size, designed to transport 16 or more persons, including the driver.
  • Any vehicle required by federal regulations to be placarded while transporting hazardous materials.
guyjax(Guy Hodges)'s Comment
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First aide I will leave to you but a basic one from Walmart will be just fine.

Basic tools would be a Phillips and flathead screwdriver. Crescent wrench and a few basic box end wrenches. Star and Allen wreck set as most 50 in gs in the cab use these type of screws. Basically it can all be bought for under $20 at any Walmart also.

Brett Aquila's Comment
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Yeah Donna, you won't have to worry about that right away because in the beginning you're going to be running team with a trainer and the trainer will handle that kind of stuff. By the time you have to go solo you'll know what you'll need. Guyjax is right though - a few basic things is all you need - a basic tool set you can get real cheap anywhere - a few screwdrivers, pliers, adjustable wrench, hammer, etc. But again, I wouldn't worry about that stuff right off the bat. In the beginning when you're running team with your trainer space it tight and you won't be able to bring very much with you. You're probably not going to want to take up space and add extra weight with a toolset on day one.

Schism's Comment
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When you are through with trainer time and out on your own get a 8 or 10" vice grips. If you ever get a release handle on a set of tandems that won't latch open you will be glad you bought them

Tandems:

Tandem Axles

A set of axles spaced close together, legally defined as more than 40 and less than 96 inches apart by the USDOT. Drivers tend to refer to the tandem axles on their trailer as just "tandems". You might hear a driver say, "I'm 400 pounds overweight on my tandems", referring to his trailer tandems, not his tractor tandems. Tractor tandems are generally just referred to as "drives" which is short for "drive axles".

Tandem:

Tandem Axles

A set of axles spaced close together, legally defined as more than 40 and less than 96 inches apart by the USDOT. Drivers tend to refer to the tandem axles on their trailer as just "tandems". You might hear a driver say, "I'm 400 pounds overweight on my tandems", referring to his trailer tandems, not his tractor tandems. Tractor tandems are generally just referred to as "drives" which is short for "drive axles".

Starcar's Comment
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I find a very large hammer is a must if you drive a truck...just sayin'....

Joe S. (a.k.a. The Blue 's Comment
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As everyone has said, don't worry about it right now since you are with a trainer. But as soon as you get out by yourself, there are a few things that you need.

I found out the hard way. The number 1 thing is a broom. A push broom. And get it at Wally World. The truck stops are way too expensive. Even the Home Depots and Lowes are cheaper. My first stop at a "food" pickup. All I had was a little whisk broom that I clean my cab out with. And now I had to sweep a 53' trailer. I didn't think it was that bad. Mostly dust and dirt from forklift tires. But they wanted it CLEAN. Thought I was going to have to mop it before it was all over. rofl-3.gif

I finally borrowed a broom from another trucker. After asking 3 of them. What ever happened to helping your fellow trucker?? The first one said his was broke. The second one said he didn't have one. OK, I will believe the first one, I don't know. But the second one, his was stuck down in the rack with his load locks. wtf.gif

The one that helped me out was a fellow driver from Celadon. Maybe that helped.

A good hammer is mentioned. Also I would suggest a good crow-bar. Or something to pull nails with. Yes, a hammer most times will do the job. But as happened to me about a month ago. I had to pickup at a food warehouse. They wanted ALL the nails out of the floor. Well someone had put 20 penny nails deep into the floor. And if you have ever tried to pull 20 penny nails out of solid oak. It ain't easy with just a hammer.

I ended up bending most of them back and forth till they broke off. A hammer just weren't gonna pull them nails.smile.gif

I have even bought my own squeegee with an extension handle. I have been to too many truck stops where someone leaves the one supplied by the truck stop on the ground and it is broken. Or there aren't any at all. And I really need to clean my window.

Plus it helps the times you get splashed and have to pull into the closest rest area to clean your window. Yeah, you have a washer, but a couple of times the mess has been so bad that even the wipers don't get it real clean. It helps. At least to me.

Keep it safe out here, the life you save might be your own. Joe S.

Jim G.'s Comment
member avatar

First, a quality pair of leather gloves. Flashlight, a medium size hammer, small crowbar, rags, an umbrella or rain coat, a few rubber bungies, duct and electrical tape and a good knife. Also a cell phone, active or not, charged for 911 emergencies. Tire guage, In winter months keep a torch. These basic items will get u started comfortably. The rest will come to you depending on your comfort needs

Deb R.'s Comment
member avatar

Items I have found essential include a 2 lb. hammer (looks like a little sledge hammer), a flat pry bar for pulling nails, screwdriver with interchangeable heads flat, Phillips, and star, a needle nose pliers, vice grips for stuck tandems and pulling nails, ratchet set, leather gloves, lined diesel-proof gloves for fueling, gorilla tape, earplugs. My advice is not to go for cheap generic versions of tools like screwdrivers and vice grips, you need quality that will hold up when you need it. I can get just about everything I need, for good prices, at Farm and Fleet.

Tandems:

Tandem Axles

A set of axles spaced close together, legally defined as more than 40 and less than 96 inches apart by the USDOT. Drivers tend to refer to the tandem axles on their trailer as just "tandems". You might hear a driver say, "I'm 400 pounds overweight on my tandems", referring to his trailer tandems, not his tractor tandems. Tractor tandems are generally just referred to as "drives" which is short for "drive axles".

Tandem:

Tandem Axles

A set of axles spaced close together, legally defined as more than 40 and less than 96 inches apart by the USDOT. Drivers tend to refer to the tandem axles on their trailer as just "tandems". You might hear a driver say, "I'm 400 pounds overweight on my tandems", referring to his trailer tandems, not his tractor tandems. Tractor tandems are generally just referred to as "drives" which is short for "drive axles".

G-Town's Comment
member avatar

Donna, Most everything I carry has come from Harbor Freight. Like Ollie's you get "good stuff, cheap". I have read the two replies with suggestions; and with the exception of the torch, all reasonable items to carry. Remember your job is to inspect and drive the truck, not repair it. My toolkit consists of very basic things, vice-grips (for holding a worn tandem pin-puller in place), adjustable wrenches (1 small, 1 medium), medium size screwdrivers, crow-bar, claw hammer, rubber mallet, bungie-cords, duct tape, electrical tape, leather-punch (for punching holes in mud flaps), retractable utility knife, Swiss Army knife truck-tire air pressure gauge, and an assortment of nylon cable-ties. The most complicated thing I have ever done is replace a mud-flap, replaced fuses, replaced wiper-blades, and replaced headlight bulbs. We have Road-Assist and close proximity to a SWIFT repair shop.

Two sets of gloves; work gloves and neoprene coated fuel gloves. I store the gloves in a re-sealable quart sized plastic bag.

I also carry a small retractable razor blade (paint scraper) for removing stubborn, baked-on bug-splats from the windshield.

Tandem:

Tandem Axles

A set of axles spaced close together, legally defined as more than 40 and less than 96 inches apart by the USDOT. Drivers tend to refer to the tandem axles on their trailer as just "tandems". You might hear a driver say, "I'm 400 pounds overweight on my tandems", referring to his trailer tandems, not his tractor tandems. Tractor tandems are generally just referred to as "drives" which is short for "drive axles".

Seminole Wind's Comment
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Ok . . . Is the torch for frozen brakes ? confused.gif

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